United States I 13
“Classical Music is a genre that unites us all in an increasingly polarized and divisive world. We should use the ease of listening to it today to make more music for our generation. I hope to someday be able to make music of my own.”
Kansas City native Eddison Chen began taking home medals at national and international piano competitions when he was 8 years old, placing at the Chicago, Steinway, Kaufman Music Center (New York), and Music Teachers of North America, as well as the International Young Artist Competition in Washington, D.C. His grandmother was his original encouragement for starting lessons, and it wasn’t long before he was “writing random pieces of ‘music.’” A current student of both Steven Spooner at the Peabody Institute and 2013 Cliburn third-prize winner Sean Chen at the University of Missouri-Kansas City Conservatory, he applied for the Cliburn Junior hoping to gain valuable concert experience, to learn from great artists, and to meet new friends. He says the ultimate goal and motivation of all his piano studies is “to make music that is unlike most music of today,” and hopes to one day “compose a score from a story.” Outside of the piano, Eddison likes to play chess and study math; he’s involved in Math Club at his school and is a National MathCounts finalist. He also enjoys looking at maps and measuring distances between places in the world.